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Old 10-28-2020, 10:53 PM   #1
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Ford F-250- Must drive 1k BEFORE towing??? Seriously?

I just happened upon the on-line owner's manual for the F-250 that we're picking up this week - planning to pick it up and go get our trailer out of the dealership (warranty work).

...Suddenly I see that they want at least 1,000 miles BEFORE the truck pulls anything. Seriously? How can BMW take vehicles off the line and put them into autocross events for enthusiasts (who drive them as hard as if they just stole them with police in hot pursuit), but I need to break in this nearly $6-figure truck for 1,000 miles?

Please tell me it's like the speed limit - suggested, but not practical!

What's YOUR experience?
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Old 10-28-2020, 11:22 PM   #2
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Both the engine and driveline need to be broken in, and GM has similar provisions. I guess it depends on how you want to maintain your truck. How do those autocross enthusiasts care about the long term health of the vehicles they drive?

As an aside as a participant in a performance event I wouldn't want a new vehicle--It probably wouldn't perform as well as one that has 5,000 miles on it. Also, the last BMW car I liked was the 2002 (model, not year).
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Old 10-28-2020, 11:28 PM   #3
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Most likely to break in the rear end, Ram recommends 500 for the same reason.
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Old 10-29-2020, 05:14 AM   #4
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I had a 2012 Superduty and I needed 1,000 miles before I towed. Lucky for me I came close. It was not exactly clear as to why. Now there was no speed recommendation like in the old days when you had to drive under a certain speed to help break in the engine.

I think I ended up with just 800 miles before I started to tow with no ill effects.

I did hear later the whole drive train benefits from this break in period.
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Old 10-29-2020, 06:33 AM   #5
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Not only do i put the recommended milage on, but i then change all the oils. If you gotta break em in, there’s a good chance you will have generated some metal particles.

Like you said, these things run over 60k, so if you want the best chance of it lasting, what’s 2 days, and 500 clams in the overall scheme of things.

Its your rig, and your clams, do as you want.
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Old 10-29-2020, 07:08 AM   #6
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It's your truck - run it how you want. That said, there's a reason the engineers that designed the truck mandate the break in period. The only possible motive for that is to improve overall product reliability.

BMWs are a joke when it comes to reliability, so who cares if you redline it out of the parking lot? I used to race motorcycles, and EVERY manufacturer out there recommends a break in period. I'd argue that those are more purpose built racing machines than beemers.
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Old 10-29-2020, 07:21 AM   #7
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Yup--don't know about 2500 or 3500 but most GM products have a 500 mile "break in period" with specific prohibitions on driving apply: eg, no pulling, no hard braking, no extreme acceleration "recommended"......
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Old 10-29-2020, 08:12 AM   #8
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Having built differentials, I would always vary speeds for 200 to 300 miles if possible, and not set the cruise.
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Old 10-29-2020, 08:36 AM   #9
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Yep, new ring and pinions need heat cycles. And they need it to vary too during break-in.
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Old 10-29-2020, 09:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
I had a 2012 Superduty and I needed 1,000 miles before I towed. Lucky for me I came close. It was not exactly clear as to why. Now there was no speed recommendation like in the old days when you had to drive under a certain speed to help break in the engine.
I wonder if that's due to having more gears. Back then most transmissions were three speed so going over 60 likely meant higher RPMs than today. Also I suspect the machining standards are higher for the engine parts.
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Old 10-29-2020, 09:52 AM   #11
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I towed twice before 1000 miles. Once around 600 mile mark, once around 900 mile mark. Both trips were 8 miles to our local RV shop. Then I towed for a 400 miles trip when just a few miles over 1000 on the clock. Then I changed the oil to full synthetic when I got back.

Of course that could be their excuse to reject your warranty claims, but as long as you don’t tow a 15000 lbs fifth wheel when there is only single digit on the clock, then you should be fine. I believe all trailer towing info were registered on the computer as long as you are using the 7way connector. They may still reject your claim, but it’s going to be very ugly on the news. Just imaging a news title “Ford rejected premature axle failure warranty claim because customer towed his 2000 lbs landscape trailer with the BUILD TOUGH F250 before 1000 miles”.

Few hundred miles should seat the rear end. Your engine and tranny shouldn’t require any break in.
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Old 10-29-2020, 09:56 AM   #12
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2012 was not the dark ages. My superduty was a 6 speed.

Not towing until 1,000 miles was not a surprise to me. I figured there would be some sort of break in schedule. But at 800 miles I had to tow my 5th wheel from the RV Park.
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Old 10-29-2020, 10:27 AM   #13
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I would venture to guess that on the BMWs, because they are lower production rate vehicles more care is taken at the factory to set up the rear end - i.e measuring for correct pinion location and preload and selecting shims, or machining to tighter tolerances.

In this way, there's less actual break in required.

I have a hewland gearbox in the car in my avatar, and it costs about $300 in labor to change the R&P, because there's special tooling required and then a shim selection. Then all I had to do was about 20 minutes of less-than-racing to break it in.

I'd guess that on production trucks, there's less time available, they shim it tight and let it wear in.
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Old 10-29-2020, 08:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSJC View Post
I just happened upon the on-line owner's manual for the F-250 that we're picking up this week - planning to pick it up and go get our trailer out of the dealership (warranty work).

...Suddenly I see that they want at least 1,000 miles BEFORE the truck pulls anything. Seriously? … Please tell me it's like the speed limit - suggested, but not practical!

What's YOUR experience?
Depends on your expected future use. If you plan to drive it a couple of years, then trade it in, then ignore the break-in period.

But if you plan to use it for mostly towing a heavy RV trailer for 200,000 miles over 10 years or more, then you want to break it in right - so it will last a long and trouble-free life.

Purpose: "Mate" the gears in the tranny and diff. Break-in (burnish or sear) the brake pads.

During break-in, o jack rabbit starts and no panic braking.

In your case of towing the trailer home from the shop, tie onto the trailer and "baby" it on highways. Gently accelerate up to speed.

If more than 10 miles from shop to home, use cruise control in tow-haul mode, and change cruising speed every 10 miles or so (or every exit if in the country with limited number of exits) in the following pattern:
1] 50 MPH
2] 60 MPH
3] 70 MPH
4] 65 MPH
5] 55 MPH
6] Repeat the above

Exit the highway at every exit, using the brakes only gently, if at all. When traffic allows, you want maximum throttle-off deceleration without using the brakes. (Throttle-off deceleration sucks oil up into the engine rings, speeding up mating the rings to the cylinder walls). Accelerate gently back up to the correct speed.

If it's not far from the shop to your home, then no problem. Just baby it home with no jack-rabbit starts and no panic braking.

To continue break-in without the trailer, plan on spending some time driving in city traffic. Again, easy acceleration and lots of throttle-off deceleration.
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